SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS, Belgium — Defending Components One champion Max Verstappen enters the mid-season break in unstoppable kind, after emphatically profitable the Belgian Grand Prix on Sunday for an eighth straight win and tenth total of a crushingly dominant season.
Regardless of ranging from sixth place he completed 22.3 seconds forward of teammate Sergio Perez to provide Crimson Bull a straightforward 1-2. It moved Verstappen ominously nearer to a 3rd straight world title and his personal F1 file of 15 wins from final 12 months.
Verstappen is 125 factors forward of Perez after simply 12 races, and his subsequent goal is matching Sebastian Vettel’s F1 file of 9 straight wins with a victory on the Dutch GP when the lopsided season resumes on Aug. 27.
Began P6, completed P1
— Components 1 (@F1) July 30, 2023
“I simply need to have a pleasant time now, have a little bit of time with household and pals,” Verstappen stated.
Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc completed in third spot for a 3rd podium of the season, with Lewis Hamilton in fourth for Mercedes forward of Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso.
George Russell was sixth for Mercedes, with Lando Norris (McLaren), Esteban Ocon (Alpine), Lance Stroll (Aston Martin), and Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri) finishing the highest 10.
Leclerc began on pole forward of Perez, with Hamilton and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. behind them. McLaren rookie Oscar Piastri was on the subsequent row alongside Verstappen — who was quickest in Friday’s qualifying however took a five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change and needed to keep away from early site visitors.
“It was nearly surviving flip one. I might see it was all getting actually tight,” Verstappen stated. “I’ve been in that place earlier than myself so I’m simply going to remain out of that and it labored out. From there onwards I made the proper overtakes.”
Final 12 months Verstappen gained from 14th, and as soon as he overtook Perez on Lap 17 of 44 his forty fifth profession win was seemingly inevitable.
“Actually pleasant to drive as soon as I acquired within the lead,” Verstappen stated. “It was once more an amazing race.“
Crimson Bull prolonged its file to 13 straight wins, together with the ultimate race of final season.
Hamilton got here in on the penultimate lap for a tire change and the transfer paid off as he took the bonus level for quickest lap from Verstappen — a really minor blip for the dominant Dutchman.
It was one more stellar weekend for Verstappen, who additionally gained Saturday’s dash race. The one concern was some extra bickering together with his race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase over radio, as they continued their spat from Friday’s qualifying.
“Don’t neglect Max, use your head, please,” Lambiase informed Verstappen when he questioned why Perez was making his first tire change on Lap 14.
Verstappen defused any discuss of rigidity with Lambiase.
“It’s advantageous. We all know one another very nicely and we’ve got an excellent relationship,” he stated. “I feel it’s actually essential.”
With some rain forecast, Verstappen boxed on the subsequent lap and got here out about 2 seconds behind Perez. Simply minutes later he cruised previous Perez and, as so typically this season, the remainder was nearly management.
Perez, in the meantime, pledged to remain on the rostrum for the remainder of the season.
“It’s been a little bit of a tough patch,” the 33-year-old Mexican stated. “I really want this summer season break, it’s been actually intense. I’ll come again actually sturdy for Zandvoort.”
Circumstances had been dry for the race begin, in stark distinction to the 2 earlier days, which had been impacted by heavy rain on the 7-kilometer (4.3-mile) Spa-Francorchamps circuit.
Leclerc, who gained his first F1 race right here in 2019, made a strong begin however Perez’s additional tempo quickly put him in entrance.
“I knew it was fairly essential for my race to get Charles on Lap 1,” Perez stated.
Verstappen rose two locations to fourth after Sainz ran into Piastri on the primary nook.
Piastri needed to retire, whereas Verstappen overtook Hamilton on Lap 6, Leclerc three laps later and made brief work of Perez simply earlier than some rain fell briefly.
Some good overtaking from Ocon moved the Frenchman up from tenth to eighth within the closing phases.
It was an early finish for Piastri, who had impressed with a second place in Saturday’s dash race.
A nasty day for Sainz noticed him retiring on Lap 25 and Leclerc shifting above him within the standings.
“After all the race was good on my aspect, a disgrace for Carlos as we had good tempo,” Leclerc stated. “If you have a look at the Crimson Bulls we nonetheless have a whole lot of work to do … This was the perfect we might obtain at the moment, little question.”
After the F1 break there will likely be 10 races left, however many of the competitors for locations will likely be behind Verstappen.
Alonso is one level forward of Hamilton in third total, with Leclerc and Russell stage and Sainz seven factors behind them.
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